On the Road to Voice Payments, Google and Amazon Pull Ahead of Apple

by Joseph Walent 0

The adoption of voice-based interface has proven to be the latest facet of human to technology interaction, as illustrated by the increasingly popular Amazon Echo (Alexa) and Google Home (OK Google) hubs. How these devices will incorporate the use of vocal-identification as a biometric authorization, and how issues of information privacy will be addressed remain as open questions, but the anticipated application of shopping subsequent payment authentication are already underway.

There is an increasing number of service providers bringing Alexa integrations to enable commerce through voice. Currently, it adds a level of convenience to small purchases, like a Starbucks coffee or an Uber ride.

Mercator Advisory Group notes the above mentioned purchase initiations conducted via a voice interface technology such as Amazon’s Alexa would at present need to be finalized via another channel, such as a smartphone when the actual product or service was provided. As the article outlines, we agree that the majority of generalized transaction activity initiated via voice-interface will be limited to commoditized or standardized items or services. We anticipate Amazon will continue to have a leg up in this sphere, as it will have access to buying history, and will be able to learn much from a regular request to “”Buy more paper towels.”

Overview by Joseph Walent, Associate Director, Customer Interactions Advisory Service at Mercator Advisory Group

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